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#2927055 - 05/14/18 09:22 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: AnotherScott]
Lady Gaia Offline
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Registered: 11/18/17
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AnotherScott hit on a number of the points that are relevant to me, but clearly there is no definitive answer to what itís worth. It varies by individual, and for those whom the answer is $4000 and above theyíll make sales until demand drops and we see how flexible their pricing is. Thatís the way of most things.

Likewise, the question of whether hardware is worth the premium over software is hardly unique to this instrument. Itís true of every synthesizer out there, and again the answer is individual.

In practice, 16 channels of high-quality self-oscillating resonant filters is pretty CPU intensive if youíre trying to closely emulate the real thing. Then thereís 200GB of SSD that I wonít be tying up in my laptop, and a decent keybed thatís weighted radically differently than my other current options in addition to everything mentioned about real-time controls. Iím very much looking forward to having this hybrid blend of extensive samples and analog filtered warmth in my setup because it fills a gap for me. Whether thatís true for others isnít particularly of concern.
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#2927062 - 05/14/18 10:01 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Lady Gaia]
Nathanael_I Offline
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Well, a Rev2 is $2000. It has two oscillators (saw, triangle, saw+tri, and pulse) + sub osc and 16 voices, 24db filter, and a smaller mod matrix.

The Prophet X also has two DCO's (Sine, saw, pulse, supersaw) adds two sample oscillators and a true stereo signal path. It has a bigger mod matrix, and two real time touch faders over the Rev2. It also has a huge set of samples from a very professional sampling company - I'm sure they were paid something.

So, is it 2x a Rev2? Kind of. Double the oscillators, better hardware real-time controls, can do typical analog poly sounds, but lots of extra ground due to samples. The sine wave is more useful with samples than the triangle wave, and I'd rather have supersaw than saw+tri wave in the REV2 - more useful. The sample oscillators could always add most any other wave shape that could be conceived, so the oscillator section is massively better than a REV2.

DSI makes other synths for $3k - this is well more powerful than any of them, so $4k it is. I can see how they get there. Still a chunk of $$ but less than a Solaris, a Quantum, or a Modal 002/008 - $4k is the "uber synth" price point apparently - absent the Schmidt or vintage poly's that are 2-5x this cost.

Many of the cutting edge sounds for movies and other uses are mangled samples of some kind or another. This puts that in a real-time tweaking package. Novel and will produce sounds not easily had elsewhere.

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#2927105 - 05/15/18 06:45 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Nathanael_I]
John64 Offline
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So we're basically back to square one when it comes to the handling of the sample content?
Sample access is indeed very quick, almost unnoticeable.
But now I'm still in the dark about the entire process of how the sample content is accessed.
Furthermore, sample mangling requires the entire sample to be loaded, not just a beginning.

Also, a percussive sound takes up a less space than a 10-layer velocity switched unlooped piano, so there is probably a lot of variation between the different sample groups.
I wish DSI/8DIO would shed some light on the internals and how samples are handled.

When it comes to computer based VST's and the Prophet X there's a huge difference in the interface alone.
One is a generic platform which can be used for audio production purposes, the other is a musical instrument with hands-on tweakability, and the interaction with both is very different.

I also wonder about the internal SSD, is it easy replaceable by owners of the Prophet X with another SSD if there's defect, and how about the sample content on the SSD in case of a replacement, can it be downloaded somewhere or will replacement SSD's with the content be obtainable and installed by a DSI dealer or do you need to make your own image of the content in case something goes wrong?

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#2927129 - 05/15/18 08:30 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: John64]
ElmerJFudd Offline
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#2927184 - 05/15/18 01:07 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: AnotherScott]
KorgyPorky Offline
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Registered: 03/03/17
Posts: 85
Originally Posted By: AnotherScott
Originally Posted By: KorgyPorky
In the end... the only difference between this sound engine and the many high quallity VSTís is the analogue filte...

So how much better is this analogue filter then the computer programmed ones?
And if so, is that worth Ä4000?



VSTs don't give you the same kind of hands-on control as this dedicated control surface does. VSTs require a computer, this doesn't. What would this set of 8Dio samples cost in the VST realm? Could you do the same kind of sound mangling as easily, in real-time? And switch among the sounds as quickly? There are a whole bunch of differences even before you get to the analog filters.


I ought to agree with this...

But with the new hardware integrion seen with omnisphere 2.5
This might actually change.. i can see software getting the same interface as hardware(becaus ethe hardware is actually the interface)

What if i added some keyscape stuff and some oscilators in omsiphere
And controll it with a novation peak or Roland system 8..
The only difference would in fact be the analogue filter..

Leaves again the question..
How much difference is there between omspheres plethora in filters and the prophet x filter in soundquallity?

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#2927194 - 05/15/18 02:06 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: KorgyPorky]
mate stubb Offline
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...and you still need to lug a computer around. And the hardware is most likely generic instead of purpose built.

But do whatever floats your boat.
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#2927195 - 05/15/18 02:07 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: KorgyPorky]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Hardware integration in Omnisphere is cool, but still a compromise, compared to all the controls the Prophet X has, pre-configured to do just the right things and logically laid out for its particular workflow. You have knobs that relate to information in adjacent displays. You have knobs that light up different sets of LEDs. It's a bit more involved than finding a control surface that can roughly approximate the typical controls of a classic Moog/ARP/Oberheim style design.

Also, Omnisphere doesn't include the sample aspect, does it? Could you bring the 8Dio sample set into it? I see you mentioned keyscape, but it sounds like that would be its own soundset, and not sounds you could mangle inside Omnisphere, am I right? If that's so, it seems to me you'd be missing a lot of what the Prophet X is designed to do. It's not merely a synth and a rompler in the same box, but one where you can process the rompler sounds through the synth in real time. Can Omnisphere do that?

Then there are the other questions that always come up when comparing hardware and software... Will you be able to load and switch between sounds as quickly? Will latency become an issue as you increase your demands on the system?

What would your alternate configuration cost, including Omnisphere, the 8Dio library, the Roland System 8, and a computer that could do a first rate job at running it all?
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#2927247 - 05/15/18 10:47 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: ElmerJFudd]
Nathanael_I Offline
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Originally Posted By: ElmerJFudd


There's also a lot of other Superbooth videos starting to show up now. It really does make a lot of nice sounds - very nice sounds. Sounds that analog poly's don't make.

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#2927249 - 05/15/18 10:57 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: AnotherScott]
Nathanael_I Offline
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Originally Posted By: AnotherScott
Hardware integration in Omnisphere is cool.....

Also, Omnisphere doesn't include the sample aspect, does it? Could you bring the 8Dio sample set into it? I see you mentioned keyscape, but it sounds like that would be its own soundset, and not sounds you could mangle inside Omnisphere, am I right? If that's so, it seems to me you'd be missing a lot of what the Prophet X is designed to do. It's not merely a synth and a rompler in the same box, but one where you can process the rompler sounds through the synth in real time. Can Omnisphere do that?


I have Omnisphere and an OB-6 (one of the supported synths for the new hardware control). After watching the video on the upcoming 2.5 release, I'm not sure what the point is. They used Omnisphere to set up an OB-6 signal path. So now I can use hardware to control software making the kinds of sounds the hardware makes? Why not just play the hardware? I will play with it when it comes out, but there must be more to it, and I'm not getting it yet. Most of the really cool stuff in Omnisphere is not on any hardware synth, so a mouse will be required.

Omnisphere has a huge sample set behind it (not as big as Prophet X, though). Furthermore, every Spectrasonics product can be accessed from Omnisphere, including Keyscape. Keyscape comes with sounds that use the Omnisphere library. They sound great. Omnisphere offers far more sample mangling possibilities than the Prophet X, a bigger mod matrix, more polyphony, more FX, etc.

The Prophet-X is desirable for the reasons you point out about hardware control vs software, but Omnisphere can definitely do the sort of manipulation that the Prophet X can and a lot more. The filters won't sound the same, the samples will be different, etc.

But I find myself just experimenting and programing on my hardware synths regularly. The VST/AUs tend to be preset monsters - find the sound, play it without tweaking. Omnisphere is ridiculously capable - a beast of a synth, and it gets better all the time. But it isn't as fast or direct as hardware.

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#2927263 - 05/16/18 02:07 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Nathanael_I]
mauriziodececco Offline
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Somebody mentioned that weighted keyboards have been discussed ?
I would seriously consider switching to a TP100 (or similar) Prophet X from my NE5HP if the weight stay reasonable :->

Maurizio
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#2927275 - 05/16/18 04:41 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Nathanael_I]
AnotherScott Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Nathanael_I
Omnisphere has a huge sample set behind it (not as big as Prophet X, though). Furthermore, every Spectrasonics product can be accessed from Omnisphere, including Keyscape...Omnisphere can definitely do the sort of manipulation that the Prophet X can and a lot more.

Thanks for that info.

Originally Posted By: Nathanael_I
The filters won't sound the same, the samples will be different

People paid more for a Minimoog than they could for more capable, less expensive synthesizers, because they didn't sound the same. People pay more for a Mojo61 than they do for a Roland V-09. If comparing sound is as important as comparing functionality, then there would appear to be no direct software equivalent to the Prophet X, i.e. something that would sound the same. KP asked whether the filter is worth $4k,, but the filter isn't the only (or even necessarily the biggest) source of sonic difference, if you have a completely different set of underlying samples to mangle. The $4k is getting you entirely different sounds (as well as a different way to interface with their creation/manipulation).

It's also a red herring to ask if the filter is worth $4k when $4k is not the premium you pay over an Omnisphere-based system, but rather the entire price. It's not like an Omnisphere-based system is free. Even his proposed system of Omnisphere, Keyscape, and a System 8 approaches $2500 without any computer cost, and with a less capable control surface, as you point out when you say, "most of the really cool stuff in Omnisphere is not on any hardware synth, so a mouse will be required. "

Originally Posted By: Nathanael_I
They used Omnisphere to set up an OB-6 signal path. So now I can use hardware to control software making the kinds of sounds the hardware makes? Why not just play the hardware?

Kind of getting back to what I said about the Minimoog and Mojo61... you may be using a similar set of controls, but presumably you will be able to interact with sounds that sound quite different from those that come out of the machine directly.
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#2927309 - 05/16/18 07:57 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: AnotherScott]
Lady Gaia Offline
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Registered: 11/18/17
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Loc: Seattle
There are actually a ton of demo videos from 8Dio, not all of which show on their web site. A few of the more recent ones include:

Fretlessness:


Chamber Harps:


Grand Piano 1928:


Saxophonetic:


Taped Upright:


Shimmer Brightly:


130 BPM:
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#2927351 - 05/16/18 11:23 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Lady Gaia]
GovernorSilver Offline
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Loving most of the demos. Can't wait to try one in a store - after watching ProfD show how its done of course.
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#2930427 - 05/31/18 08:54 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: GovernorSilver]
Nathanael_I Offline
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Composer Charlie Clouser (Saw, etc) wrote an extensive review after playing with the Prophet X for several hours over on VI-Control.

Prophet X review

If you read down just a post or two further, he compares it to the Waldorf Quantum.

From my read, he confirms everything I hoped or suspected was true of the instrument, particularly that it is immediately musical and easy to make great sounds on in typical DSI fashion.

If you are interested in the Prophet X, Charlie is a VERY experienced synthesist (originally in Nine-inch-Nails), and this is worth reading.

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#2930429 - 05/31/18 09:22 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Nathanael_I]
davedoerfler Online   confused
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Originally Posted By: Nathanael_I
Charlie is a VERY experienced synthesist (originally in Nine-inch-Nails), and this is worth reading.


I agree. Thanks for posting. thu
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#2930433 - 05/31/18 10:10 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: davedoerfler]
Lady Gaia Offline
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Also noteworthy today is that DSI posted the Prophet X manual on their official forums.
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#2930480 - 06/01/18 08:22 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Lady Gaia]
GovernorSilver Offline
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Originally Posted By: Lady Gaia
Also noteworthy today is that DSI posted the Prophet X manual on their official forums.


I can't find the link to the manual on that page. When I click "Here is the manual" the browser just refreshes to the same page.

Clouser's review was a great read.


Edited by GovernorSilver (06/01/18 08:23 AM)
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#2930586 - 06/01/18 03:08 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: GovernorSilver]
Lady Gaia Offline
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I just checked the link again with no problems. You may need to be signed into an account on the forum to have access to attachments like that.
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#2930597 - 06/01/18 04:15 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: davedoerfler]
David Emm Offline
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Originally Posted By: davedoerfler
Originally Posted By: Nathanael_I
Charlie is a VERY experienced synthesist (originally in Nine-inch-Nails), and this is worth reading.


I agree. Thanks for posting. thu


+1. This is what I always hope to see when a new tool grabs my attention: a real player who describes the heart of it as an instrument, apart from the specs. I'm enjoying *this* case of GAS much more than usual. Praise Dave, as well as anyone who throws money into my Prophet X hat for my unsettling dancing and endearing kazoo covers.
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#2930616 - 06/01/18 07:23 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: David Emm]
ProfD Offline
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Originally Posted By: GovernorSilver
Loving most of the demos. Can't wait to try one in a store - after watching ProfD show how its done of course.

Ha. grin

Gov, we'll coordinate a micro-mini-hang. I'll let you know when I'm at Chucks. cool
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#2930623 - 06/01/18 08:24 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: ProfD]
davedoerfler Online   confused
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Originally Posted By: ProfD
Gov, we'll coordinate a micro-mini-hang. I'll let you know when I'm at Chucks. cool


OT now (of course laugh ). If I am there also is it still considered a micro-mini-hang or would it be upgraded to a mini hang? idk grin
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#2930653 - 06/02/18 04:28 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: davedoerfler]
ProfD Offline
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Originally Posted By: davedoerfler
Originally Posted By: ProfD
Gov, we'll coordinate a micro-mini-hang. I'll let you know when I'm at Chucks. cool


OT now (of course laugh ). If I am there also is it still considered a micro-mini-hang or would it be upgraded to a mini hang? idk grin

Yessir. If either you and/or Marky decides to show up, it becomes a mini-hang. laugh

Back OT, from the Sequential X demos, I can hear a sound designer's dream. I'm definitely curious to hear the X in the hands of a performing muso. cool
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#2931862 - 06/08/18 10:19 AM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: RichieP_MechE]
jverghese Offline
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Not sure if this has been mentioned over here:

https://www.soundonsound.com/news/prophet-x-uses-filter-new-audio-chip-makers

The Prophet X uses a new filter chip (SSI2144) that is based on the classic SSM2044.

Does it matter in a synth that mainly uses waveforms other than harmonically consistent sawtooth and pulse waves?

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#2931876 - 06/08/18 12:52 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: jverghese]
GovernorSilver Offline
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Originally Posted By: jverghese
Not sure if this has been mentioned over here:

https://www.soundonsound.com/news/prophet-x-uses-filter-new-audio-chip-makers

The Prophet X uses a new filter chip (SSI2144) that is based on the classic SSM2044.

Does it matter in a synth that mainly uses waveforms other than harmonically consistent sawtooth and pulse waves?


I think you're the first here, because Sound Semiconductor only made this announcement a couple of days ago. I guess an NDA made them wait until the PX started shipping before they would be allowed to say anything.

BTW, it seems a couple guys important to synth history were involved:
Quote:

Then there was SSM (Solid State Micro Technology for Music), founded by Dan Parks, whose chips were used in Rev 1 and Rev 2 Prophet-5s as well as Korgís Mono/Poly and Polysix.

Dan Parks is now back and heading up Sound Semiconductor with the goal of developing affordable, high-performance ICs for electronic music and pro audio.

The SSI2144 is an updated and improved re-issue of the SSM2044, which found its way into the aforementioned Mono/Poly and Polysix, and which many believe to be the best-sounding filter IC ever produced. Both the original SSM2044 and new SSI2144 were designed by electronic music icon Dave Rossum.
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#2931889 - 06/08/18 02:32 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: GovernorSilver]
Lady Gaia Offline
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It has been discussed elsewhere as something of an open secret, but itís great to see formal confirmation. It is certainly a part of the sound that really speaks to me on the Prophet X.
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#2932674 - 06/13/18 09:42 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Lady Gaia]
Lady Gaia Offline
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Registered: 11/18/17
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Loc: Seattle
Iíve seen confirmation from several people with tracking numbers, and Iím happy that mine is among them. I donít have an estimated delivery date yet but at least one fellow reports having an expedited date (or local pickup?) of tomorrow. Mine will likely arrive early next week.

Impressions incoming.
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#2932675 - 06/13/18 09:45 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Lady Gaia]
Nathanael_I Offline
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Lady Gaia, I'm looking forward to your impressions and hopefully some longer term opinions after you've gotten to know the synth more thoroughly. It remains high on my list for later this year.

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#2933745 - 06/19/18 11:05 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Nathanael_I]
Lady Gaia Offline
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Early impressions from my first couple of hours:

Beautifully constructed, this is a build that lives up to expectations set by the price point. The semi-weighted action feels good (1), the ashen stained end caps match the dark metallic aesthetic better than any natural stain possibly could, and in my limited time so far all of the controls have a nice solid feel to them. It is a knobby synthesizer at heart with obvious DSI heritage.

A quick tour is really all Iíve had time for, but there are both standout moments and aspects that Iím going to have to explore deeper before Iím entirely sure what to think. Thereís also a lot I need to look at more deeply, including the effects. Essentially all Iíve done is dial in the plate reverb with some percussion and itís wonderfully stunning. I could have played that kit for hours.

The stereo filters are obviously a centerpiece of the tools at a sound designerís disposal and they are glorious. Warm and buttery, with resonance that can be subtle or aggressive. I havenít played with drive much just yet, so thatís also on my list to explore further. In the time Iíve had this evening I have only sped through the first of four banks of presets. Thereís a ton here, and so far itís really wide ranging with more of a tendency toward exuberance than bread and butter.

I should also point out the part Iím least blown away by, which is plain, exposed sample playback. First and foremost, the Prophet X is not going to replace anyoneís modern sampler. This should be obvious from reading the manual, but itís still something of a shock in practice, and anyone hoping otherwise should adjust their expectations. The samples appear to be well recorded and plentiful, but the lack of any per-sample editing or synthesis parameters means youíre going to use them in a very particular fashion. You canít tweak a single drum differently than the rest of a drum kit: one pan position/filter/tuning/etc configuration applies to the entire kit. You canít freely mix and match samples from different keymaps. Thereís no overt provision for switching between among keymaps based on velocity, though itís certainly possible to cross fade between two if desired.

No, itís not really a sampler. Itís a synthesizer whose oscillators can draw from raw sample material. With that in mind Iím not entirely convinced just yet that the samples offered are the most useful set imaginable. Theyíre a little specific and literal, drawn as they are from a primarily acoustic library. Still, thereís quite a range on offer and there are definitely a number of unusual ambiances and other textures to explore in addition to the familiar and more exotic acoustic fare.

So it has to come down to doing more than just mixing samples and calling it a day. Finding out just how far you can go with the tools here will be interesting. Those are the terms on which I plan to address the Prophet X and Iím going to need time to dig in that I wonít have much of before the weekend. There are a number of patches Iíve come across that have only oscillators sounding, and theyíre still marvelously complex and expressive. Just familiar. So, Iím expecting the real magic is in letting samples and oscillators interact, and thatís where Iím going to be digging deeper.

I wish I could spend more time tonight but, alas, meetings tomorrow morning mandate that I get a reasonable nightís sleep.

(1) I am going to have to explore the velocity curve options because the factory setting appears to have a pretty narrow usable range. Itís easy to produce extremely low and high velocities but the middle of the range takes a unfamiliar touch.
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#2938935 - 07/22/18 03:20 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: Lady Gaia]
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Lady Gaia, thank you so much for your reviews here and on the Dave Smith forum. I'm pulling the trigger on this in the next few weeks. Coming from a Nord Stage 3 and a DeepMind 12, so a big change for me. I'll keep you posted!
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#2939034 - 07/23/18 01:37 PM Re: New synth: DSI Sequential X [Re: cphollis]
RudyS Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 11/06/02
Posts: 2313
Loc: Groningen, The netherlands
Are you going to use that for live with the band Chuck? Or is it a nice toy for in the home studio?
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Rudy


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